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District and Club Projects

Projects by clubs and districts have a hugely positive impact on the communities they benefit. If you would like to share details of your project, please contact International Resource Group Co-ordinator Drew Hughes

The Baby Clothes Project  - a Rotary Story

Santa Maria Romania (founded by Rotarian Elizabeth Tatman) has been sending clothes and shoes for children to Iasi in North East Romania for the last ten years, starting with the pyjama project for the children’s hospital. So when an email arrived to Drew Hughes, Chairman of RIBI International Committee, from Sandra Davey, Rotary Club of Monmouth, saying “Drew, I have some bags of baby clothes, is there anywhere they can go?” The response from Elizabeth was “send them to me and I will get them to Romania and the Republic of Moldova” (as the picture shows happened in April this year).  District 1100 have now taken this on as a District project, as have clubs in District 1280.

Great oaks from little acorns grow and the Baby Clothes project is like that. The Monmouth Club have collected and transported by various methods some 70 bin liners of clothes. The Rotary Club of Leigh, inspired by the visit of President Jim Houghton, who happens to be the warehouse manager for the Rotary Shoebox Scheme, have used a District Simplified Grant to collect or buy baby clothes and baby products that can go to mother and baby units, maternity hospitals and young mothers who have been abandoned by their families.

Add to this the donations of knitted goods from ex guiders, crochetted blankets from various ladies, hundreds of knitted jackets and blankets and a collection of baby clothes by Rivington and Blackrod school. And goods still keep coming in. Others have donated money to help with the transport so that we can now send out 2 pallets in the next few weeks. One will go to Hope and Homes in Baia Mare and one to the Rotary Club of Bucharest. More will go with the shoebox lorry to Iasi early 2013  and one to Chisinau in Moldova. if your club has contacts with any clubs in Romania or the Republic of Moldova we would be happy to hear from you.

It is difficult to work out the exact value so far but a rough estimate would be as follows. Having counted the number of average items in a bin liner (60) and worked out the average cost to be £5 making £300, multiply by 24 bin liners ( I have that amount waiting to go to Much Hoole)  and make up a bale, £7,200 and 4 bales make up a pallet. You can do the sums £28,800. How many pallets do we have ready to go? 3 so £28,800 x 3 =  £86,400.

I would suggest that we now have a forest with even more saplings being grown, sewn or knitted. If you or your club wish to take part please contact either Elizabeth Tatman or Jim Houghton.

The Pahar Trust

In 2011, the Pahar Trust Nepal reached and passed the milestone of spending £1million building schools and health posts in the remote Himalayan regions of Nepal. This magnificent sum has built over 60 schools and 3 health posts as well as several smaller related projects. Many Rotary clubs are involved with the trust here in the UK and there are links with several clubs in Nepal. The project manager was introduced to Rotary when Clifton Rotary club visited one of their projects and he has since become a member of the Pokhara Fishtail club.

Perhaps the biggest Rotary involvement to date has been from District 1100 with the completion of a school paid for with donations from many different clubs including Bredon Hill, Evesham and Pershore. Individual clubs such as Hereford, Bristol and Bristol Breakfast have also taken on different projects and will be visiting them in Nepal in the next 4 months.

The Trust uses an old Chinese Proverb as inspiration: if you are thinking 1 year ahead, plant a seed. If you are thinking 10 years ahead, plant a tree. If you are thinking 100 years ahead, educate the people.

Every project with the Pahar Trust needs the full support of the local community they must provide land, haul building materials around and break rocks by hand to make aggregate. They therefore feel a real ownership of the project. Much work is done to improve and maintain standards in the schools and they consistently outperform local government schools. A friendship links scheme with schools in the UK also helps especially when pupils visit their twin schools high in the mountains.

Clifton Rotary has been involved in a couple of health posts now and is very pleased with the work being done by these nurse or community medical assistant-led primary care centres. There are many opportunities to become involved with the Trust. £10,000 can build a health post and schools cost from £20,000 depending on size. Visit the website for more information

First Steps Himalaya

This project is sponsored by District 1010. In August 2011, the Sangachok project reached its second anniversary. Many of the original children have started school and are doing well. 2011 was been a year of incredible growth for the trust and with plans in 2012 to build several more centres and establish a large number of satellite services. First Steps Himalaya aims to have 90 centres in Sindhupalchok district alone by 2015.

Projects are expanding to support of primary schools. Currently, funds are provided for two primary school teachers and provide teacher training at ten schools in the area. Volunteer teachers are doing a fantastic job sharing their knowledge on child friendly methods with early childhood staff as well as local school teachers. More trainers are due in Nepal to continue this excellent work. 

Child sponsorship is very important to success. Sponsorship enables a continuation to deliver high quality pre-school education for the children as well as provide education to their families.  For the price of a newspaper, lives of children are changed forever.

There are many ways to support First Steps Himalaya. Visit the website for more information.

Ukerewe Project Update June 2012 Ukerewe Project Update June 2012 Download Ukerewe Project Update June 2012
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